File:Sopona.jpg

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Summary[edit]

Description
English: This is a statue of Shapona, the West African God of Smallpox. It is part of the CDC’s Global Health Odyssey (GHO) collection of artifacts. A uniquely carved wooden figure, it is adorned with layers of meaningful objects such as monkey skulls, cowrie shells, and nails. Donated in 1995 by Ilze and Rafe Henderson, it was created by a traditional healer who made approximately 50 Shaponas as commemorative objects for the CDC, WHO, and other public health experts attending a 1969 conference on smallpox eradication.


Smallpox was thought to be a disease foisted upon humans due to Shapona’s “divine displeasure”, and formal worship of the God of Smallpox was highly controlled by specific priests in charge of shrines to the God. People believed that if angered, the priests themselves were capable of causing smallpox outbreaks through their intimate relationship with Shapona. Suspecting that the priests were deliberately spreading the viral disease, the British colonial rulers banned the worship of Shapona in 1907; however, worshiping the deity continued with the faithful paying homage to the God even after such activities were prohibited.
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This media comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Public Health Image Library (PHIL), with identification number #8003. Note: Not all PHIL images are public domain; be sure to check copyright status and credit authors and content providers.

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Author James Gathany (photo), CDC/ Global Health Odyssey
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"This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions. As a matter of courtesy we request that the content provider be credited and notified in any public or private usage of this image."

Licensing[edit]

Public domain
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Government as part of that person’s official duties under the terms of Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 105 of the US Code. Note: This only applies to original works of the Federal Government and not to the work of any individual U.S. state, territory, commonwealth, county, municipality, or any other subdivision. This template also does not apply to postage stamp designs published by the United States Postal Service since 1978. (See § 313.6(C)(1) of Compendium of U.S. Copyright Office Practices). It also does not apply to certain US coins; see The US Mint Terms of Use.
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Date/TimeThumbnailDimensionsUserComment
current11:30, 26 October 2013Thumbnail for version as of 11:30, 26 October 20131,190 × 1,800 (681 KB)Splintercellguy (talk | contribs)Upload higher-resolution version
17:44, 10 February 2010Thumbnail for version as of 17:44, 10 February 2010700 × 1,058 (94 KB)DO11.10 (talk | contribs){{Information |Description={{en|1=This is a statue of Shapona, the West African God of Smallpox. It is part of the CDC’s Global Health Odyssey (GHO) collection of artifacts. A uniquely carved wooden figure, it is adorned with layers of meaningful object
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